How close to home will the new round of federal budget cuts hit?
As part of the White House’s plan for some $80 billion in budget cuts that if put into effect will carve about nine percent from non-defense programs and 13 percent from defense programs. The cuts, if passed will take place in less than 12 months. The current administration claims the cuts are part of an effort to over the next 10 years to reduce the federal deficit by about $1 trillion.
A spokesperson for the federal controller of the Office of Management and Budget says that these proposed cuts are not only arbitrary and large but will have severe impact across the board on government programs, especially those aimed to help lower income families. Some of the impacted programs include:
- Early childhood education programs that help thousands of at risk children get a fair start for school.
- Millions of fewer meals would be delivered to the elderly and disabled.
- Fewer criminals would be prosecuted because of furloughed federal prosecutors.
- Fewer federal food inspectors
- WIC benefits will be cut for needy and at risk families with small children.
While the White House budget office has remained quiet on how the cuts would most likely fall, federal agencies were sent a memo recently to begin notifying thousands of workers that furloughs would possibly begin in the very near future. However, it should be noted that the memo was not an official 30 day noticed required by federal law. The President has begun pushing congress to delay the cuts in hopes of gaining time to put a more comprehensive budget together that will both hike taxes and cut expenses. Members of congress have stated they are not in favor the current plan for cuts and have passed legislation that would replace it with more sensible reforms and cuts.
It should be noted that if the current plan does take effect, there will be an economic growth slowdown, due mainly to the estimated 1 million jobs that are lost along with furloughed federal workers having less money to spend. Less services and products available across the board would have a deep impact on the country’s economy as well.
Although Republicans and Democrats can’t seem to agree on how the new plan should be laid out, they do agree that the White House’s current plan is a bad idea but think it may be preferable to any new deal that may be put forth.